Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Emergency - 703-573-5679 Detox - 703-502-7000 (24/7)

703-383-8500
TTY 711

8221 Willow Oaks Corporate Drive
Fairfax, Virginia 22031

Daryl Washington,
Executive Director

September is Older Virginians Mental Health Month

Studies show a critical need for additional mental health services for older people with major psychiatric illnesses now and an expectation that this need will more than double over the next 25 years.

Photo of three older adults walking for exercise

September is Older Virginians Mental Health Month, an annual observance in Virginia to focus on opportunities to highlight mental health needs of our older citizens and promote discussion of strategies to address those needs.

There are things all of us can do to equip ourselves with information about older adults dealing with later-life issues. Why not consider enrolling in the CSB’s Mental Health First aid to help Older Adults course? This community-wide training provides participants with important skills to recognize and help older people with mental health concerns or who may be experiencing a mental health crisis. Family members, caregivers, anyone working with older adults, as well as older adults, are encouraged to enroll.

Fairfax County’s 50+ Podcast featured CSB staff discussing Mental Health First aid to help Older Adults on their latest edition (22 minutes).

It is just as important for older people with symptoms of depression or other mental health concerns to seek treatment as it is for people of other ages. The impact of mental health conditions on older adults can be serious. Learn to recognize these warning signs of depression in older adults, from the National Institute for Mental Health:

  • Noticeable changes in mood, energy level, or appetite.
  • Feeling flat or having trouble feeling positive emotions.
  • Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much.
  • Difficulty concentrating, feeling restless, or on edge.
  • Increased worry or feeling stressed.
  • Anger, irritability or aggressiveness.
  • Ongoing headaches, digestive issues, or pain.
  • A need for alcohol or drugs.
  • Sadness or hopelessness
  • Suicidal thoughts.
  • Feeling flat or having trouble feeling positive emotions.
  • Engaging in high-risk activities.
  • Obsessive thinking or compulsive behavior.
  • Thoughts or behaviors that interfere with work, family, or social life.
  • Unusual thinking or behaviors that concern other people.

Additionally, the CSB participates in the Regional Older Adults Facilities Mental Health Support Team (RAFT). For ten years, RAFT staff have provided intensive mental health services to individuals, education and training for staff from long-term care facilities, and case consultations with clinicians regarding challenging behaviors in older adults. Learn more about RAFT, their eligibility requirements, services and mental health resources or visit the RAFT website, hosted by Arlington County.

Learn more about services and opportunities for older adults in Fairfax County.

Contact Information

Contact for news media inquiries: Lucy Caldwell, Communications Director, 703-324-7006 (office), 703-856-5210 (cell).